The F.A. has concluded its investigation into controversial tweets made by Burnley striker Andre Gray in 2012, and has imposed upon him a four-match suspension. The tweets in question ranged from sexist to homophobic, with the most inflammatory including his apparent wish that gays would “burn” and “die.”
In a statement, the F.A. pointed to six tweets in particular that they found to be in violation of the association’s rules. It’s unclear which exact tweets the F.A. took issue with, but here are some likely candidates from that 2012 time period, from the Daily Mail:
At the time these tweets were posted, Gray was playing for Hinckley United in England’s sixth-tier league.
Here’s part of the F.A.’s statement, from the Guardian:
“Burnley forward Andre Gray has been suspended for four matches commencing with immediate effect for misconduct in respect of social media comments. It was alleged that six postings on his Twitter account were abusive and/or insulting and/or improper and/or brought the game into disrepute contrary to Rule E3(1).
“It was further alleged that these breaches of Rule E3(1) included a reference to sexual orientation and/or gender and/or colour and/or race contrary to Rule E3(2). The player admitted to three of the breaches, and denied the remaining three were in breach of FA Rules.
“Following an Independent Regulatory Commission hearing yesterday, the remaining three breaches were found proven. The player was also fined £25,000, warned as to his future conduct and ordered to attend an FA education course.”
Gray, whose difficult upbringing included fighting his way out of the local gang scene in order to become a professional player, has expressed his regret for the tweets through a Burnley spokesman.